Big Foot, UFOs, and Atheists? I
Are atheists real? Atheist is defined as a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of God or gods. Is this possible? You would have to define god. To a Christian, God is "God". To an atheist, "God" is, well, not "God". If someone says, "god" with a little "g", then they are normally referring to something they worship. A god can be anything. Even self-proclaiming atheists have "gods". If someone says, "God" with a capital "G", then they are referring to the Creator of all. He is someone they worship.
This series of articles will approach a rational discussion about the existence of God. We already know that gods exist. We want to know about the One and True God, right? I mean if He really exists, then "why all this suffering"? You can name off many questions for a "loving God" that just don't seem to make sense, especially if He was real. That is until you look at the questions, and more importantly Him, objectively.
How many rational discussions do you have on a daily basis about Santa Claus? During Christmas, Santa Claus is all the rage. However, even during the Christmas season, do you have rationale conversations about him? You have two choices concerning Santa Claus. You can believe he exists or you can believe he does not. I would think that outside of a select few adults that may need help, it is really only small children that have a genuine belief that Santa Claus exists.
What about the tooth fairy? At what age do we realize that the tooth fairy is really a parent or guardian that replaces the tooth you have under your pillow with money. Easter bunny? Fairy godmothers? The list is long but relevant here. Why? Because if an atheist were to truly put this group into perspective, they would realize that because they do not believe that Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, the Easter bunny, fairy godmothers, or any other fantasy figure exists, they do not have conversations about them. They are not angry at them. They do not look down on those that do believe in this very select group. Most certainly, they do not blame these fantasy figures for all of the "ills" in the world. After all, aren't these fantasy figures designed to make us feel better about things or enhance our life experience at certain times of the year?
To a Christian, God is everything. He is as well to an atheist, but will will get to that. Psalm 14:1 says, "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God". Well, if that were true, it really doesn't matter how much explanation is given to an atheist, they will continue in non-belief. The good news for my atheist readers is that this is not a series of articles to prove you wrong. These articles will be to written to make you think. To believe that everything you see got here by accident takes more faith than to believe that a master planner created it all. These articles will help you see it from a different angle.
Some of the questions that atheists ask are the same that we as Christians ask. We would like answers as you would like answers. Our families die of strange diseases. We see people die of starvation in Africa. We lose businesses. Our kids get into car accidents. We have encounters of the third, fourth, and fifth kinds. So? Yeah, it is heavy to think that a "loving God" would allow this. The disconnect between atheists and Christians is really not that wide. Christians believe that God is their Father. If God is our Father, then that would make Him a parent. Aren't parents supposed always be loving and take care of their children?
When your child was two years old and was sick, did you take them to the doctor? Did the doctor pull out a needle and administer a shot to the child? If so, what sort of cruel parent were you to allow this maliciousness? You heard your child screaming their head off. You knew that the needle was going to hurt them immensely. You knew that your child would hate you for a period of time for allowing this doctor to put a needle into their arm. And yet? Yup, you allowed it. Why? While this may seem silly, it is a very weak attempt to give you a glimpse into the thought process of a loving God. What may be hell for a few moments, days, weeks, or even years, can turn out to be for our best interest. Sounds cliche? Maybe, but it will at least get you to think a little differently. If for just the purpose of reading these articles, try and see the human existence as more than just a 70 or 80 year run. The Bible speaks of eternity, so just for the sake of reading these articles, approach it from that stand point and see if it helps.
If God is truly a loving God, does that mean that He loves everything? Of course not, do you? If He is a Holy and Just God, as the Bible outlines, then He must really not like certain things. We immediately know of 10 things He didn't like. The ten commandments were put in place to help establish the law. While the point of the law is not relevant for these articles, God not liking something is. We have laws in our society and without them, there would be anarchy. The definition of anarchy is a state of disorder due to absence or nonrecognition of authority. Catch that? "non recognition of authority". What is authority based on? God, at least in Christian circles, has authority to make laws. He did just that in the writings of Moses. Our society hates laws. Although when faced with the definition of anarchy, they are willing to allow these laws. Just don't enforce them too hard, eh?
Dr. Scott Thompson, Vice-President of Fruitland Baptist Bible College, explains the "pendulum effect". People sway from side to side. For example, in politics, the left and the right swing from one degree to another. A great example of that would be John F. Kennedy. He said to "ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country". He was the liberal poster boy in the late 50s to early 60s. Today, this way of thinking would be considered very conservative. What changed? The pendulum swings and the beliefs attached vary. While the liberals and the conservatives have always wavered, why such a big move in political thinking? Because while a pendulum swings, it is affixed to something at the top to make sure it is steady. However, if the pendulum is actually moving, then the swing within the pendulum is not really accurate. The pendulum MUST be affixed to something so the swing of it is constant.
If you review the Bible in its original languages, there is NO variance. In other words, the pendulum does not move at the top where it is affixed. Christians, real ones by the way, do not sway more than the pendulum will allow. It is held in God's hand and He does NOT move. Philosophy and worldly thinking believe that each life has the right to do that which is "right in their own eyes". When put into realistic thinking, does that have "anarchy" written all over it? Of course it does. That is why atheists "allow" law. Atheists want the same thing Christians want. They want a life of peace, prosperity, and the American dream, right? While the road to such euphoria may be different for atheists and Christians, the goal is realistically the same. However, the means of travel is the difference.
Some of the questions that will be covered in subsequent articles will be:
Why, after debating this for thousands of years, are we no closer to agreeing which god is real or even if there are any gods at all?
Why, over 500 years, has science continually ruled God out, but NEVER ruled him in?
Why do god believers use transparently invalid arguments to justify their beliefs?
Why is there not even one argument for a god that all fair-minded people can agree to?
Why does geography determine which god people worship and not something else, such as intelligence?
Why is it that less-well educated people are MORE likely to “find” God, and not less likely?
Why are the most prayerful countries the most deprived, and not the most successful?
Why do god believers indoctrinate their children instead of allowing them to decide for themselves once they’ve grown up?
Why are god believers so often certain about things they cannot possibly know are true, such as what happens after they die?
Why do god believers rely on faith, when faith cannot distinguish true ideas from false ones?
Why does God allow suffering?
Why does God not just come out and say, "Here I Am"?
Why is Jesus the only way to heaven, if heaven were real?
How can the Bible be real if it is full of contradictions?
How is Christianity credible when it is full of hypocrites and evil doers?
While the questions list could go on and on, if you have one you would like answered in coming articles, please feel free to email us and we will answer them for you.
Atheists believe in something. This is why the term atheist makes no sense. Whatever their belief is in, it is their god. We, as humans, are created to love and worship. Our job here at Bible Pass is to simply give you an alternative to worship.